African media leaders’ summit tries to tackle challenges

African media leaders’ summit tries to tackle challenges

JOHANNESBURG (HOL) – African Media leaders have concluded their annual summit that aimed to foster ideas and action that will bring positive change to the continent’s media landscape and industry agendas

Having drawn more than thirty distinguished panelists and speakers from African media organizations, the summit which was held at Brichwood hotel in Johannesburg discussed about the role of the media in a digital environment.

Among the key issues highlighted by the leaders was the goal of formulating ideas and actions to address some of the pressing challenges lagging behind the continent’s media progress.

With the theme of  ‘Shaping Development Conversations in Africa: The Role of Media in a Digital Environment’, the summit discussed about the six presented points, with two others emerged during the discussions: Media and Development (from the English-speaking respondents) and Adapting to Digital Technology (among French-speaking respondents).

During the three-day summit launched by the Mauritius president Ameenah Gurib, the attendants accused African media of failing to publicize women’s important contribution to peace building, including the female peacekeepers in the African Union force in Somalia.

Somalia was represented by Ahmed Gure, Hiiraan Online’s managing director and Ali Abdi Aware, SBC president, a Puntland-based TV and radio station at the summit which featured plenary panels, a series of innovative thematic exhibitions, specialized workshops, and special symposium on ‘Overcoming Hate Speech in the Media’, moderated by Al-jazeera’s senior correspondent Mohamed Addow.

During the panel discussion, the continent’s media leaders expressed their open interest to engage with their counterparts from around the world.

Despite the new considerable progress, African media have been relatively undeveloped—due to lack of financial capacity and the impact of the digital changes, indicating a lower status than  somewhat more
dramatic than in countries where traditional media have been much better established.